Masterpiece Of The Day: Dylan Tallchief’s xlStudio

V1 of xlStudio has officially been released

Dylan Tallchief describes himself as a creator of music, tutorials, livestreams and videos. With his latest efforts Microsoft Excel Developer needs to be added to that already impressive list. Starting with an excel-based drum machine in late 2019 he now upped the ante once more. He built a complete DAW in MS Excel. Tallchief’s very own variant of a digital audio workstation is called xlStudio which is currently available as free download in version 1.0.2.

Dylan walks you through his ingenious piece of excel-art in his corresponding YT tutorial. While doing so he uses a-ha’s all time classic Take on me as an example. The track is provided with the excel-sheet. Alternatively you can start with an empty version of xlStudio to create your own track without further ado.

Tallchief walks you through xlStudio

xlStudio consists of three worksheets: Arrangement, Piano Roll and Drum Machine. With those three sheets the excelfile somehow provides the (very) basic functionality you would usually expect from a DAW. You can create your melodies, build drum patterns and finally arrange everything in the way you want it to be. BAM! Tallchief actually included some impressive features such as swing, automatic chord creation and last but certainly not least .als export for further use in Ableton.

Nonetheless xlStudio is inevitably bound to the limitations of MS Excel based on the fact that it has simply been created with a whole different range of tasks in mind. This is especially true when it comes to usability which tends to be rather clunky in the Excel arrangement tool compared to what is standard in software like Ableton or FL Studio.

You need to enable Excel macros to get the full functionality of xlStudio. Please be aware that enabling macros might be a security breach when working with downloaded xls files.

If you like xlStudio or any other part of Dylan Tallchief’s work you can easily support him through his patreon page.